Tirtzah Bassel in Domestic Brutes at Pelham Art Center

In Dialogue with Tirtzah Bassel

Tirtzah Bassel grew up in Israel, the oldest of eight in a Jewish Orthodox family. Her father is a traditional scribe and her mother, a ballet dancer by training, was the homemaker when they were growing up. Although both of her parents were very creative and the value of making things by hand was instilled early on, she didn’t know any professional artists and had no concept that making art was something she could do as an adult. This changed when she took a night class at the Jerusalem Studio School in her early twenties. She recalls how she was immediately drawn to the intensity of the atelier-style learning environment, drawing and painting from observation, and the methods of the Old Master paintings. She later decided to pursue an MFA at Boston University and subsequently moved to Brooklyn. “Perhaps it was the continuous traversing of worlds – religious and secular, Israel and the US, Hebrew and English – that led me to ground my work in close observation of seemingly mundane situations,” she says.

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Artists on Coping: Miles Hall

During the Coronavirus pandemic, Art Spiel is reaching out to artists to learn how they are coping.


Deconstructing the Apocalypse in her own Image, 72 x 84, Oil on panel, 2018. (in studio)

Miles Hall is a painter and draftsman. He has lived in California, Massachusetts, Japan, and New York, but now resides in Richmond, VA. His work explores the mythological relationship between the landscape and human figure. The science and psychology of visual perception is important to his practice. He currently teaches in the Communication Arts Department at Virginia Commonwealth University and maintains a critical visual arts review for the Richmond area called Lucid.

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